Agrikol (Montreal, June 2019)


Agrikol was my group’s last dinner in Montreal but it wasn’t my last dinner in Montreal. This is not because I stayed longer in the city but because I made a second dinner stop that night. Actually, it’s more accurate to say that I treated the group meal at Agrikol as an appetizer to the night’s main event at Damas, where I met two old friends for a fuller meal after abandoning my group. Unlike Damas, Agrikol is known not for Syrian but Haitian food. It is also known for being owned by Win Butler and Régine Chassagne of the Arcade Fire—they were co-owners when the restaurant opened in 2016 along with Jen Agg of Toronto’s The Black Hoof and her partner, the artist, Roland Jean, but as of 2018, the Arcade Fire power couple are the “sole” owners. Chassagne is of Haitian origin and the restaurant is a tribute to her roots. As you might expect from the Arcade Fire connection, it is not an informal/bare bones restaurant—as seems to be the case with Caribbean restaurants in most American cities—but a hipster destination. The restaurant is strikingly and attractively decorated inside and out—with murals by original co-owner Jean—and if our reservation at 6 pm on a Wednesday is any sign, packed with young and beautiful Montrealers. Continue reading